7 February 2013

An Australia Day Dress

Australia Day: Think backyard cricket, lamb on the BBQ, having fun with friends.

And then your son tells you he feels really ill. I hope your Australia Day had at least some of the elements I listed at the start. Me? I cancelled my plans to go to visit friends and indulge in lamb and good company, and instead stayed at home (with the aforementioned child telling me an hour later that he felt fine!)

So, to pass the time in the afternoon, checking all the time for a relapse of the tummy pains, I took the kids into my studio, and put on a couple of DVDs that we could all watch together. I had thought that I would just make up a  pattern for a dress that I had in mind while watching the movie, but it came together so quickly that I then cut out the fabric (never mind that I was planning on pre-washing it), and sewed it all up. All in time for dinner (still no lamb in sight though)!

The Dress

A bit too long with enormous armholes!
I have recently read a couple of reviews of a particular pattern from a Japanese book: Drape Drape 2. It was only when I read the second of these that I realised I had the perfect piece of fabric to make it from. The fabric is a stretch print given to me by my sister in her own attempt to manage her fabric stash. She gave it to me with the proviso that I had to make my daughter a dress from it, and it was NOT to end up in my stash. Thankfully it has a pattern that I wasn't likely to use to make something for myself, so that part of the deal was easy to keep (if you don't count the fact that the dress only used one quarter of the fabric).

The pattern was pretty easy to make. It's all one piece (binding excepted), with the fold down the left hand side forming the drapy bit. Armed with my self-drafted size 4 pattern blocks, I drew up my own pattern in record time. (If only all patterns came together that quickly!) I placed the front and back touching at the hem on the left side at a 90 degree angle, joined up across the underam, and it was done! (N.B. Actual process of making the pattern may have been sped up with some important shaping bits left out for dramatic impact).

The dress only has 4 seams, 3 bound edges and 1 hem, so needless to say, the sewing didn't take long either. I had to make a few adjustments to fix the enormous armholes, but I'll keep that in mind for next time.

I did wash the finished dress before I allowed (or should that be forced) my daughter to wear it. The dress was able to drape a little more successfully then.

I'm thinking that I might try to get my hands on a copy of Drape Drape 2. Meggipeg shows off quite a few garments from this and the other 2 Drape Drape books, and I could certainly see myself wearing some of them. I'm not sure that I would make a full sized version of this dress for myself though. Maybe a hip length version might work on me? The original is supposed to be a top after all. But I think this knee length dress looks great on my daughter. And she seems to like it too.

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